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[Official Thread] Wang Yi Bo 王一博

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For fans of The Untamed (source).

 

This is a Wang Yibo Appreciation Post

Okay, first of all, whoever was responsible for even considering Wang Yibo as Lan Wangji ought to get an award. I mean look at this boy

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Who looked at him and thought, “Yes! A perfect Lan Wangji!” It boggles the mind. In fact, one of the funniest things I found when the series was first aired was UNIQ fans belatedly realizing that Lan Wangji was being played by Wang Yibo. The whiplash must have been something because the gap is just unreal.

 

I remember that back when news came out that there would be a live action adaptation of MDZS, not a lot of people were behind Wang Yibo being casted as Lan Wangji. I would even admit to being one of the naysayers, and if I delve deep into this trash bin of a blog, I would probably find something I said last year that was along those lines. Mind you, this was in stark contrast to how people reacted to Xiao Zhan; most people liked him, thought he looked great as Wei Wuxian, and he just got a lot of approval on the get-go. The promotional posters that came out though just did not really do Wang Yibo justice. As Lan Wangji, he did not look the part, he seemed quite young, who even was Wang Yibo, or if you knew Wang Yibo, like really, Wang Yibo? And so on and so forth. 

 

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The great reveal though is that apparently, Wang Yibo is the kind of guy you just have to see in action. The moment I got into him playing Lan Wangji? I was sold. I was so sold I would willingly eat my shoe for everything I ever said about CQL casting back in 2018. That face, the look? Picture perfect. His manner, his restraint, the way he conducts himself in fight scenes? It was sheer genius casting a dancer for the kind of grace required to pull off the esteemed Hanguang-jun. I love Wang Yibo’s Lan Wangji and knowing what I know now, if you give me another actor to play Lan Wangji, I would stab him in the eyeballs, I am not kidding. Don’t give me anyone else other than Wang Yibo.

 

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Now, Xiao Zhan has proven time and again that he understands Wei Wuxian, and the great thing is he is articulate about it. I think it’s pretty well known that this boy makes entire speeches and writes legit essays when asked about Wei Wuxian. We love that about him, and I think this is also why he is so popular with the fans. We don’t get as much of that from Wang Yibo, but much like how it wasn’t until we saw him in action that he proved why he was a fitting Lan Wangji, the same could be said here. He does understand Lan Wangji. How do we know? Because it just shows. I find that appreciating this boy is in seeing him just do things. I remember how it was when, with each episode that passed, people just started noticing how Lan Wangji—poker face extraordinaire—was behaving in each of his scenes. We went, “Was that–? Holy richard simmons, yes, it is?? How is this actor pulling off these micro-expressions? How is it that we are actually getting emotions from Lan Wangji??”

 

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This went on up until a lot of us slowly realized, “You know what? This is a really good Lan Wangji we have here.”

 

The Untamed also gave us a lot of promotional and behind-the-scenes content, so let’s talk about that, too. There is something refreshingly genuine with Wang Yibo that I don’t think I often see in many celebrities. It could be because he’s young, but that just makes it more impressive how well he is performing on-screen. Out of costume though, he doesn’t seem to have many filters, and it is such a riot following him and listening to the kind of richard simmons he says in interviews (and taking note of how the “more adult” Xiao Zhan reacts to them).

 

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Besides, a drama with two guys as leads? This could have easily been a recipe for clashing egos. While whichever actors playing Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji would find themselves being called the “two male leads” of the show, the fact of the matter is, Wei Wuxian’s character is defined by his actions and his convictions. He fights against something larger than himself, and in this sense he is the typical hero of a story. Lan Wangji, meanwhile, is defined by his devotion to Wei Wuxian. 

 

People get compared all the time, rankings are a thing, and product endorsement usually can only afford one popular celebrity as a brand ambassador. One could very easily be the actor who resents Lan Wangji’s popularity being dependent on Wei Wuxian, and thus be considered “secondary” to Wei Wuxian. But instead, and despite all the wrong ways things could go, we got chemistry on screen and camaraderie behind the scenes. Wang Yibo favored Xiao Zhan and did not compete with him. It probably helped that Xiao Zhan is older (thank goodness for Asian values), but then Wang Yibo has been a celebrity for longer. Again, it could have gone badly.

 

I cannot stress enough how important it is to me that Lan Wangji’s actor likes Wei Wuxian. It’s not by any means a necessity, but a wonderful, wonderful bonus to all this—because what self-respecting Lan Wangji wouldn’t adore his Wei Wuxian? We got cute banter behind the scenes, with Wang Yibo even seeming to be most partial to Xiao Zhan and generally being playful with him despite having a reputation of being cold to co-stars. He genuinely seemed to have had a lot of fun with his co-actor. I do not ship them nor do I follow RPF, but I find that them having that amiable and sometimes affectionate atmosphere does wonders for my own shipping of Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji. It’s like everything just feels safe and good, and my boys are happy together in all iterations of their universe. 

 

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I will always be thankful to these actors for interpreting these beloved characters so respectfully, especially given the nature of Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji’s relationship. With the threat of censorship being a very real thing for them, I’m glad we still got the bond—and yes, love—between Wei Wuxian and Lan Wangji in the scenes they share on-screen. (Actually, I sometimes wonder if Wang Yibo’s, uh, violence towards Xiao Zhan is a remnant of Lan Wangji’s affection for Wei Wuxian that Wang Yibo hasn’t shaken off after they end a scene, lol. What’s a guy to do with those feelings, right?)

 

Anyway, this accidental meta was brought to you by all these goodbye posts with CQL ending. I reiterate all the “thank you’s” to the cast, but really for me, my appreciation goes most of all to our unexpectedly excellent Lan Wangji. I said so much richard simmons about him last year, but he ended up being my absolute favorite of the cast. Wang Yibo took Lan Wangji and brought him to life in a way I never thought I needed, and now holy hell, I am churning up fanfic like mad every week. It has been such a wonderful journey, and never have I more sincerely wished success for any show’s actor as much as I do for this boy. I was so, so wrong about him, but boy, never have I been happier for being proven wrong.

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!!! Ack, Hunan TV wiped out all of its YouTube content.  Including its subsidiary channels too, like Mango TV.  Don't take away my Yibo!!!

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8 minutes ago, themarchioness said:

!!! Ack, Hunan TV wiped out all of its YouTube content.  Including its subsidiary channels too, like Mango TV.  Don't take away my Yibo!!!

 

I was literally in the middle of watching the latest DDU episode when it disappeared!   Wondering what's going on....  

 

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13 minutes ago, owlstar said:

 

I was literally in the middle of watching the latest DDU episode when it disappeared!   Wondering what's going on....  

 

 

That episode was up briefly for a few hours over the weekend before they took it down and reposted it, and since they had originally posted it a few days earlier than they normally do, I had my fears then that it would be deleted and quickly saved it.  So at least I'm safe on that score because I haven't yet had an opportunity to watch it in full!

 

As for the mass wipe-out, I don't know but I checked and Zhejiang wiped out all of theirs too.  Feels like it's all the major broadcasting stations... while the web-based ones (like Tencent/WeTV) seems to be doing okay for now... but if it's all the major broadcasting stations, I'm going to guess there was some of crackdown decision made. :( 

 

 

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@owlstar, I just realized.  You can watch through their MGTV app.  But any subbed episodes aren't subbed anymore.  At least not for the one DDU episode that I had been hoping to share with a friend today.  :( 

 

ETA: I take back what I said earlier.  It does have subs.  So I was able to share it with my friend (the Hu Yi Tien/Joe Cheng/Rocket Girls 101 episode).

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4 hours ago, themarchioness said:

@owlstar, I just realized.  You can watch through their MGTV app.   It does have subs.  So I was able to share it with my friend (the Hu Yi Tien/Joe Cheng/Rocket Girls 101 episode).

 

I'm still hoping that this is somehow only temporary??  But if not :sweatingbullets:, it's good to know there's at least another way to watch... and yay for subs!!  Do you know which other eps has subs other than that one?  Since I'm pretty much starting from scratch to watch their back episodes, I'd like to watch the ones with subs first.

 

For now I'm going to go finish Gank Your Heart, so all is still good. :)

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, owlstar said:

Do you know which other eps has subs other than that one?  Since I'm pretty much starting from scratch to watch their back episodes, I'd like to watch the ones with subs first.

 

There aren't that many, unfortunately.  Going off the top of my memory, I believe the subbed episodes start with when Xiao Zhan was one of the guests (7/28) and end with the one where Li Landi was one of the guests (9/1).  I thought the one after where Li Yuchun guested was also subbed on YouTube, but I just checked on the app and there are no subs for that episode.  I'm also not positive that every episode in between 7/28-9/1 was subbed, but that's something you can check for as you go along. 

 

I'm just glad I still have access to Yibo golden nugget moments and crossing my fingers hard that nothing happens to the app, too. 

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10 hours ago, themarchioness said:

!!! Ack, Hunan TV wiped out all of its YouTube content.  Including its subsidiary channels too, like Mango TV.  Don't take away my Yibo!!!

 

hmmm.....does that means no more HunanTv on youtube?

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Fans capture Fan Edit :D

 

YiBo rushing thru Airport to catch his flight after work

 

cr: as tagged

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Spoiler

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3 hours ago, angelangie said:

 

hmmm.....does that means no more HunanTv on youtube?

 

I haven't looked since this morning, but the channel was still there last time I looked.  I remain hopeful that so long as the channels exist (including those of its subsidiaries), the videos will one day return.  But for now, all its content is gone and so essentially, yes, that means there is no more Hunan TV on YouTube.  I don't know the reason for the removed videos - if they are wanting to push people to use their app, if China decided to enforce some sort of a block, or whether there is some other reason.  I just know I miss the vids already, although I'm glad I can at least find them on the app.  Here's hoping they won't yank their own content from that one day, too!

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20 minutes ago, themarchioness said:

 

I haven't looked since this morning, but the channel was still there last time I looked.  I remain hopeful that so long as the channels exist (including those of its subsidiaries), the videos will one day return.  But for now, all its content is gone and so essentially, yes, that means there is no more Hunan TV on YouTube.  I don't know the reason for the removed videos - if they are wanting to push people to use their app, if China decided to enforce some sort of a block, or whether there is some other reason.  I just know I miss the vids already, although I'm glad I can at least find them on the app.  Here's hoping they won't yank their own content from that one day, too!

 

hmmm i dunno.....however it does seems due to their launch of app.....why all launching own app so many app ><" 

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@owlstar thanks for sharing that article!  The more I read about the leads' acting skills in Untamed the more curious I am about the drama.  But even though I'm on the cusp, I can't seem to make myself dip my toe into that pond because it's a genre I'm just not into.  Maybe one day.  When I run out of Yibo things to watch.  :lol:

 

Anyway, that article reminded me of this interview with Yibo.  He talks about how his motivations for taking the role, how it reminded him of himself, and all I could think was: Yesss.... silent but full of expressions.  Haha.  I also liked his (very frank) disbelief at the interviewer's question about whether it was easier to act a role that didn't have very many lines.  He's absolutely correct.  Being able to portray thoughts and emotions through expressions alone is a very difficult thing to do, let alone do successfully!  Good for him for sticking up for himself.  

 

 

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@themarchioness The Untamed was my introduction to Yibo so I'll always have a soft spot for it, even though I know it's not everyone's cup of tea.  The whole xianxia/zombies genre isn't my thing either, and I'd never seen any BL stuff (didn't even know what it stood for tbh).   But the high ratings made me curious so I started watching with pretty low expectations.  The first few eps were... rough.  But then it got good... like really good.  Yibo was a little stiff at the beginning but overall he was AMAZING in this, especially for someone with relatively little acting experience.  You're right, it's so so hard to play a cold character that barely speaks (much like him on DDU lol), but his eyes spoke volumes and his chemistry with Xiao Zhan was off the charts.  Due to censorship there was pretty much zero physical intimacy (I think the most they did was a pat on the hand), which I actually appreciated because the focus stayed on their relationship/bond.  If you're so inclined, you can even say that they're just really really good friends since they never explicitly crossed the line.  I thought their relationship was done so tastefully and it was super romantic, as odd as it may sound, more so than the majority of other hetero drama couples I've seen of late.  Did I mention I'm knee-deep in fanfics?  So... many... to... read... so little time!

 

That said, show is not perfect (for one thing the CGI is pretty bad, but typical of most C-dramas), and I would keep expectations low even if you end up watching.  If it's really not your genre though, I wouldn't push it.  But let's just say you'll be missing out on some really gorgeous Yibo visuals. ;)    

 

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5 hours ago, themarchioness said:

 

Anyway, that article reminded me of this interview with Yibo.   I also liked his (very frank) disbelief at the interviewer's question about whether it was easier to act a role that didn't have very many lines.  

 

Also, all the BTS clips and interviews are gold too.  Yibo is such a hoot to watch.  I liked the "how do you deal with all the pressure" question in this interview when he was like... "what pressure?"  :lol:   No wonder there's so many of his "不愧是我" memes.

 

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On 10/1/2019 at 12:16 AM, angelangie said:

 

hmmm i dunno.....however it does seems due to their launch of app.....why all launching own app so many app ><" 

 

Whatever their reasons, I will say this for the app.  I think it has a more complete collection of the DDU episodes than YouTube ever had.  So for all my earlier complaints and freaking out, there's that. :P 

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@themarchioness Looks like Zhejiang videos are also back?  Some people are saying it was because of China's anniversary national day but I'm still not sure what that had to do with YouTube content.  In any case, I hope that's all it was and they won't decide to take them all away again.

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2 hours ago, owlstar said:

@themarchioness Looks like Zhejiang videos are also back?  Some people are saying it was because of China's anniversary national day but I'm still not sure what that had to do with YouTube content.  In any case, I hope that's all it was and they won't decide to take them all away again.

 

Yesh, I noticed that too. @lynne22 and I were speculating that to be the reason as well. We weren’t sure either how that necessarily played into into their celebrations (is people watching videos on YT that distracting from their big event?), but given timing it was the only plausible explanation we could come up with as well.  

 

Like you said, hopefully it was just a temporary thing with super bad timing on Monday (for me, personally), and we don’t have to worry about our DDU Yibo disappearing from our screens again. ;) 

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11 hours ago, themarchioness said:

Like you said, hopefully it was just a temporary thing with super bad timing on Monday (for me, personally), and we don’t have to worry about our DDU Yibo disappearing from our screens again. ;) 

 

*fingers crossed*

 

I was watching this episode and I loved everyone's reaction to Yibo's cooking lol.  The whole bit was so funny... like how Yibo kept trying to defend his dish but in the end even he had to admit it was bad lol.  I didn't know he had such a sour tooth. :P

 

 

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